"Long-braided Lolitas," or Teaching Undergraduate Music History in a Study Abroad Context

Laura E Kennedy, Patrica Puckett Sasser


This article describes a music history course entitled “Rites of Spring: Paris, the Ballets Russes, and the Arts of Modernism,” which used an interdisciplinary study abroad model for teaching and sought to address both musicological and pedagogical challenges. The course itself centered on Sergei Diaghilev’s original ballet company (1909-1929) and the ways in which the troupe mirrored the aesthetic and socio-political currents of the early twentieth century. Taking students to Paris and London, the course used the Ballets Russes as a paradigm for exploring those currents in their historical and physical context. In describing “Rites of Spring,” we hope to illustrate how diverse approaches to pedagogy can foster new encounters with music history for undergraduate students and lead to direct, experiential, and individualized modes of teaching and learning. 


music history; Ballets Russes; study abroad; primary sources

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ISSN 2155-109X